Approximately 50 martial artists took part in the inaugural Cascadia Invitational Poomsae Championships.
The competition was hosted by Cascadia Martial Arts Parksville at its club located at Wembley Mall, on Oct. 24. It drew taekwondo practitioners, young and old, from Victoria, Nanaimo, Comox and Parksville Qualicum Beach.
This year Cascadia, wasn’t able to host its annual Island Open Taekwondo Championships often held at Oceanside Place due to COVID-19. Club instructor Brett Fee said they decided to hold a poomsae competition instead to motivate students.
“We still wanted to have an event bceause the students needed a new goal to work towards and with COVID-19 derailing a lot of events this year, everyone was very eager to be involved with something,” said Fee.
Poomsae is non-contact component of taekwondo. It is fighting patterns that focus on attack and defence movements that include fundamental stances, blocks, punches and kicks.
“Poomsae is amazing for developing technique, strength and focus,” said Fee, who co-owns the martial arts club with older brother Dustin.
Participants were grouped according to their ages and belt levels. They performed the poomsae or patterns of their choice and went up against each other in a round-robin format. The competitor that has the most win in every round is considered the winner.
“It’s a uniqe format as it allowed each participant to perform not just once and compete against everybody,” said Fee. “They got the chance to improve their form everytime they compete. At the end we tally all their points just to show them how close the competition was and that way they’ll also know what to improve on and what to expect next time they compete.”
The event also served as a fundraiser for the club which plans to use the proceeds to purchase electronic scoring systems for their sparring athletes.